Sunday, January 2, 2011

As If We Had A Choice

This fucking freaks me out and I am not sure why. I mean- I take pictures of my house and post them all the time and yet, to find that my house is visible on googlemaps to such degree of detail is just...weird. I can tell from looking at the picture that it was taken in winter because my porch plants are covered and by moving the cursor around, which Jessie showed me how to do, I could go into the yard and see by which cars are there approximately the year it was taken.
Ooh boy.
I am not a person who is vastly concerned with privacy. Or piracy for that matter but that's another subject entirely. And honestly- it's not a bad picture. But how do they take these things? I know I am simple-minded but does some guy with a camera walk all over the world and take pictures and then they put them all together? I highly doubt that. Did they take this from a satellite? Really? How?
If I'd been in the yard at the time would my picture have been there too?

I guess so.

That's Ms. Moon's house. She has four dogs and six chickens. Her husband is very tall. Her grandson is learning to use a fork. Ms. Moon looks very bad naked. Age has not been kind to her and she needs to start exercising more regularly.

Is there a file with an entry like that somewhere? Should I care? Is the entire concept of privacy a moot one at this point?

I don't have any answers at all. I barely have the questions.

But it's something to think about on this Sunday evening before Mr. Moon gets home from the woods. Before I go to bed and get up in the early morning to take Kathleen up to Thomasville for chemo treatment number six if her bloodwork from last week proves her to be in good enough condition to have corrosive chemicals dripped into her veins. And you know what? I don't mind at all that I "have" to get up to take her. It is going to be cold and it will probably be dark but when I see Kathleen, all of that won't matter. That's the sort of woman she is. She carries her warmth and her light with her and she gladly shares it.

In a perfect world, you would be able to search google maps for things like this: This is where you will find light and warmth. This is where you will find wisdom. This is where you will find peace. This is where you will find good leftovers. This is where you will find joy. This is where you will find a guy who tells the very best jokes. This is where you will find an asshole. This is where you will find a serial killer. This is where you will find an old woman who has forty-seven cats who are alive and five who are dead. This is where you will find the best recipe for gingerbread in the world. This is where you will find the best and most colorful zinnias ever grown. This is where you will find someone who is the loneliest person on earth.

For fun I just went to googlemaps and typed "Biggest Asshole in the World" into the search space. Guess what came up?

An overhead view of my house.

Ah lah.

Too true.

It's a strange world we live in. After this chemo or maybe the next, Kathleen's doctor may order a scan in which he will be able to see the smallest bit of this or that which may or may not be inside of her. A sort of google map, if you will, of the universe of her body. For some reason, that idea frightens me more than any satellite shot of my house. If it was applied to me and I know she is anxious about that prospect too.

Sometimes I wish we lived back in the olden days when there was no such thing as an invasion of the privacy of our homes, of our bodies, of our very wombs and unborn children.

But with the internet, you know? I want to be able to see into your hearts or at least as much of them as you want to show me.
For some reason, that's fine with me. I guess because you choose (as do I) what to share and what not to share.

What an incredibly old-fashioned notion.

Well. Google on. Mr. Moon is home. Time to heat up the leftovers and eat our supper which, even in this superteched world of ours, we humans tend to want to do every night.

Sometimes I can barely live in all the worlds in which I inhabit without going crazy.

Be well, whichever part of the earth you live on. I trust you to keep on with it and you can trust me to do the same, right here in real life and virtually as well.

Love...Ms. Moon


  1. Here's how they do it:

  2. Yep, there is a photo of our house on that same website and there is this one website, go ahead and type your name in the search (Snoops says that you shouldn't remove your name from this site because it's just a way to gather e-mail addresses. )

  3. i so enjoyed this post of yours...
    as i hope you enjoyed your hot bath, that i captured on google maps when i typed in
    stunning with a huge heart....


  4. Allison- Whoa! What? Really?

    Rebecca- I am scared.

    rebecca- Well, I was way sunk down in the tub, hitting "play" and "stop" over and over again. And my heart? It was Truvy's. And that's why it was so huge.

  5. I do find it a bit disturbing that so much of our lives can be found by anyone that knows how to use a computer... and that's almost everyone now days... I would like to think my house is where one could find glasses forever half full...

  6. What a lovely post with nutritious thought food.
    Thank you for it.

  7. Dianne- Then I am most willing to think of your house that way.

    Ex-In-The-City- Hello and welcome! I see you are a prolific writer and I am going to enjoy that. Please come back and join us here anytime you please. We are a very good community here at blessourhearts.

  8. i just requested all my stuff to be pulled from spokemo- i don't want to make it that easy/ cheap for someone to stalk me.


  9. It's further proving my "Google is Skynet" theory.

  10. I don't know what to say. One of my favorite things about living in New York City was looking into other people's apartments -- the ones across the courtyards from me. It was like a silent movie and I knew all the stuff going on but not really. That's what I think about internet privacy (it's so overwhelming an issue that I've decided not to care).

    And be extra nice to Ms. Ex-in-the-City because she is one of the most wonderful women in the universe.

  11. I loved this post.
    I loved your imaginary google maps and the link with Kathleen's body map.
    My therapist doesn't want me to blog anymore, not the way I have been, which if how I've blogged since I met you, more real and open, not just flowers and pets.
    I am so torn.
    I would miss everyone terribly and I love the connections and just being able to write what I want.

    Like you said, it's our choice what to share.
    Mostly I just wish I'd never shared the link with my coworkers when I first started it, to show them my gardens, etc... for fun, because I would for sure not share with them now but it's too late.

    Very torn about all this. Sorry to write so much. It's just been on my mind a lot and this post opened it up again for me.

  12. The house looks swell. That's the sum total of my Monday wisdom.

    Fuck it.

  13. Mrs. A- Good for you!

    Jon- Uh, what?
    'Splain to me, Lucy.

    Elizabeth- I, too, love looking in people's windows but can only do this, passing by and since I don't go out at night, those days are about over. Rear Window, eh?
    And no, I just can't worry about internet privacy. I don't have the time or energy.
    And I will be very nice to Ms. Ex. You know I will.

    Bethany- Why does she say you shouldn't blog the way you do? I don't feel that you give out information which is damaging to you or any other. And if you want to start a new blog, can. And not give out the address to your co-workers. We shall find you. I would help if you wanted.
    I would hate to think that you would not be able to share with us whatever you want to share. But I am not a professional and there you go...

    Ms. Bastard-Beloved- I know! It's not a bad picture!

  14. I am not particularly glad to have anyone be able to know where I live and see the house. I'm not paranoid but realistic enough not to want everything on the net. Yet, here I am writing and posting photos, etc. Oh well....can't have it both ways I guess.

  15. So scary!
    One of the women I work with recently had an old acquaintance contact her. He told her how he found her online and then looked at her house I assume through this site or something similar. She was creeped out by the whole situation, especially when he described her house and told her how nice the property looked (he lives in New Mexico). Ewwww!

  16. I would even subscribe to a google service that told where to find light and warmth, peace, good jokes. The notion of a dossier, the short form, is probably more likely than not.

    Even having pared the list, there are still so many worlds to inhabit. The wish to delegate is strong but no candidates have appeared.

    It is comfortable and familiar here, and I thank you for the company.

  17. It is creepy. Our house is only on there from the sky. And from a few years back. The other day, I tried to look at some interesting parts of the world on Google maps. I started with Beijing which was fine, but then Nepal and North Korea seemed to be sensored when you got down to the ground. Maybe I'm being paranoid. But Bagdad was fine to look at.


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